Sunday, August 13, 2017

Sideway Gallery

post #348
         Last week's post had words about my visit to Hiroshima almost 50 years ago. I expressed my total conviction that nuclear weapons should never, ever be used again. And the very next day I read about some loose talk and threats by the person elected to be an American president. He seemed to be shooting off his mouth without really knowing what he was talking about. By the weekend he was doing the same thing about a far right rally in Virginia that turned to actual violence. Not at all an encouraging week. I write this for the folks in other countries who regularly read my posts; please know more and more of us will continue to persist in calling these actions out for what they are -- in addition to being obviously dangerous. The dream of democracy includes being determined.

       I do want to share some photos of my gallery -- called Sideway Gallery because I'm located on Sideway Road. I'm away from there at the moment, without the cord to plug in my eight year old laptop, so I'll go directly to photos.  That way at least there's something to show today! I'm fortunate to be able to keep my gallery and still have room to live there as well. At least I am going to give it a try!

the view of my place along Sideway Road, on the left driving in
the mail box for Sideway Gallery
gallery atmospheric, from across Sideway Road

atmospheric, looking down the driveway from the deck

inside the front door, the living room half of the front room, and some of the kitchen

part of the gallery half of the front room

my photos on the "living room" wall

 News on the ridge:
a colt's first day, before the barn is ready, but all seems well

peace on the pond
More details next week, with my sincere thanks to all who work for peace in our world.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Hiroshima Day, and the bush hogging day last week

post #347
       In my twenties, I traveled to Japan. I flew there from the Navy base in Kodiak, Alaska, while my Coast Guard husband would be gone a month in the Bering Sea on their trusty ice-breaker, the Storis.  I found the food, the customs, the scenery all so worth the trip. In addition, by miracle and by chance, I overlapped in Tokyo with Kesaya, a close family friend from New Hampshire who had recently decided to stay with Japanese relatives for the year. So, for the first few nights I stayed in a youth hostel, where I learned on the first day how to eat a fried egg with chop-sticks by watching how all the other youth hostelers did it. Then I moved to where Kesaya was living, with her aunt and uncle, and I learned a great deal more. I even had the priviledge of being part of a tea ceremony, since Kesaya's aunt gave lessons in their home. This was in the late sixties, so Japan was not then as affluent and urban as it has become.
        Eventually I headed out for some travel on my own, which is why I'm now sharing this story. Along with Buddhist temples, intimate gardens, and trains with magnificant views, I visited Hiroshima, where we Americans dropped that atomic bomb 72 years ago today.  I visited what was then the very rudimentary museum, in one of the few buildings left standing, and I stayed with Quakers at the small world peace center there.  It came to me that all my life I had wanted to go there, to pay homage to all the people who died and who have suffered every day since that terrible event. Being there was like having a door open to my feelings and the hurt I had been carrying for the world.
         I for one can not for the life of me and of those I love been able to accept that nuclear weapons should be allowed on this earth. I know President Truman justified the timing of the bomb to speed the end of our war with Japan, but it can't be allowed to happen ever again. Did we learn nothing from that devastation of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the civilian population? How can we ever justify again the use of even a single nuclear weapon!
          Dropping a nuclear bomb -- a small one by today's standards -- was a very bad, terrible idea back then. It's an even worse idea now. Remembering this day every year doesn't seem like that much to do under the circumstances. I pray for leaders capable of caring about the peace in all places. Thank you, President Obama, for going to Hiroshima in 2015 to acknowledge the reality of our history with this place.

         Here is a link to some photos of Hiroshima soon after the bomb and the same locations today. 

        Meanwhile, back in rural eastern Kentucky, last week, what few fields we have finally got bush hogged. Usually a neighbor mows those several acres yearly for the hay, but it turned out he was unable to do that this year. Instead Wayne, a kind soul and mowing ace, came with his tractor to beat back the high weeds that were taking over. I want to share a few photos I couldn't help making while he was working. I loved seeing the land re-emerge from its overgrowth while I stood where I could watch it happen. Because he warned me it's not a good idea to get too close to a mowing tractor, in case some rock or branch would fly out and do me in, I had to keep me and my camera at a safe distance. So here's some of what I saw:

FIRST FIELD, where usually we would get hay:
shorn section

half shorn section


Where's that noisy wren!?

reminders of the recent Cousin Camp

well, adorned
 SECOND FIELD, which wasn't cut last year either:

WAYNE AT WORK -- thank you!! 
THIRD FIELD, really just a hillside with perpetually poor soil, on the other side of the driveway:

  MOWING FINISHED, leaving, and luckily no one was driving down the driveway:

       The fields are already growing back, but we can now see the lay of the land. If the fields aren't mowed, they soon turn into forests. The openness also increases fire safety for the house the fields surround.  Another day in the life of, as we say.... 
         I will soon have done these posts for 7 years, once a week. I sometimes amaze even myself!!! Next week I plan to post the current state of my gallery, inside and out.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Cousin Camp, 2017, part 2 of 2

post #346
          July, northeastern Kentucky, we get together so the kids can get to know each other, with not much scheduled except for daily late afternoon swims in the pond (weather permitting) and meals and lawn darts (this year-- thank you, George Ella) and walks to the waterfalls and in the creek on the way and make believe and board games and books and playing with the kittens, the cat, the two dogs, and getting eggs from the five chickens, and catching lightning bugs of an evening and maybe a fish in the pond. Somehow it all works.

 One of the three kittens:

 The pond after some rain! Luckily, for most of the time, the pond was clear.

At the pond, all three in pjs!

Practicing for the upcoming group photo (see last week's post). Nothing as wonderful as Christmas pjs in July! Very cool!

Back at the garden, celery -- PLANTED FROM SEED -- is thriving. Bravo, Jeremey!

      I also "used" the kids for help with a book project George Ella and I have been working on.  One of the photos needed concerns eggs. Since our plan is to use a few photos of these kids on other pages, I had the idea this time to use all three kids at once, each holding an egg from the chicken house. What follows is the start of a "photo session" and then a closer view of just their hands. I tried to combine the work of figuring out how to do what I asked without making it a lot of work for them. In this case, work meant holding still.... This whole project is in progress, but I thought that sharing some of on-going process might of interest.  Thank you, A, T and W!!

         I'm leaving room to add a few of Rebecca's photos from Cousin Camp, but she has been busy celebrating their tenth anniversary, right after CC ended.  Note: I added her photos Monday evening. It's been a very busy, but happy, time.

congratulations R and J!! (The plate was a wedding gift from my sister, Haven, and her husband, Robert, who live in California. Not available at your local mall store.)


Sunday, July 23, 2017

Cousin Camp, 2017, part 1 of 2

post #345
       This year, with the addition of cousins of cousins, there are MORE COUSINS, six in all, ages 21 to 1. Total confusion works wonders, except for the ability to produce excellent quality in one's photos. O well, better instead to enjoy each other and this place and this time, still on-going.  There will be more photos next week; I hope this makes up for usually not having family photos on this blog.

OK, day one, I picked up my son delivering two kids, at the Louisville airport, three hours away. This year said son stayed two nights in Kentucky before returning to Denver, leaving said kids for another week!  No beds/mattresses left in the house, so he slept in what is called the summer "house" at the pond: no electricity, screens instead of windows, earplugs required to survive the morning din by frogs and chirping insects.

Later that same day, my daughter picks up said son's wife's brother and his family at the Morehead airport where they arrived after 6 hours of traveling via the plane they built themselves (before the birth arrivals of two kids, now ages 3 and 1.) Somehow they claim the trip went really well. They both fly F15s for the Air Force, so maybe their perspective is not your run of the mill one.

Two cousins were already here -- Thea, who lives nearby now, and her beloved half-brother who lives in Massachusetts and will be a junior at UMASS-Amherst. GO TEAM.

Hey, Dad, how did this balloon creature get on my backpack?

double the trouble this year!

chief female honcho -- sitting for a change, at the pond, every afternoon! hot weather!!

uncle and nephew, age 6
two hoops on hand, used for lawn darts as well as for the around and around
five cousin onslaught

FOR REAL - a response to a red light on the camera, on a tripod!?!?!

so happy to be wearing a cousin hand-me-down
returning from the pond

The path back to the yard, the swing, the garden, the house, and food....with family
last night's far away lightning, no sounds, just a show, a midnight magic show, at my house, a happiness shared with the grandchild staying over with me for that night

Next week, part 2!  Stay safe, be present, and thanks for reading these posts.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Third annual memorial tribute to Garry Purnell

post #344
      Yesterday's lovely weather was just right for the two hour morning ride on horses, four wheelers and carts along the ridge and over to the Purnell home place and back to the cemetery. I wasn't able to be there for most of it, but I did get to walk out to the family cemetery on the hill by myself while the ride was underway. I came back over later to visit with these neightbors/friends. And, luckily, some food remained, and kind fellowship that I really admire and appreciate.

seeing the barn on the far hill -- the barn that Jonathan is working to reconstitute

Gary's brother, sitting on the red bench, seen from the barn
Two barn photos, on its steady way to renewal:

Several family and friends photos:

I happen to like this photo a lot.  We are all sitting around a table outside. Kathy, as an avid photographer yourself, I hope you like this photo as well.
Jonathan and Ty's daughter, Natalie

Garry's grandson, Ethan

providing some field time after the pavement traveling

beautiful Bella
         Should anyone want to revisit posts of this event from past years, here are two links: 2016  and 2014.  I particularly recommend reviewing this last one --- of the funeral and first passage to the cemetery, on the hill. (Garry passed away in December 2014, but the memorial rides take place near his birthday.)